Monday, August 10, 2015
The Reader on the 6.27
Finished this in one day, it is not long but it glows.
Every day thirty-six-year-old Guylain Vignolles oversees the destruction of thousands of books at his job in a book-pulping factory. But it is a vocation he detests, a machination he abhors. The only pleasure in his day comes from reading aloud the random pages he rescues from the Thing's belly on his train journey to work in the morning, returning at night exhausted to his tiny flat and only companion, a goldfish named Rouget de Lisle. But even that has a certain uniformity to it. It is only when he discovers a lost memory stick containing the diary of Julie, a 28-year-old lavatory attendant waiting for her Prince Charming that Guylain's reading takes on a new significance. As he reads from these pages to a rapt audience, Guylain finds himself falling hopelessly in love with their enchanting author .... and set out his quest to find her.
An excerpt of her diary :
I sat down at the table, grabbed the electronic calculator from the drawer and impatiently entered the figures written down in my notebook. As always, my heart began to race as my finger pressed the EXE key for the grand total. And of course, as always, the same depressing number appeared on the screen:14,717. I'm still dreaming of a warmer, rounder number, a more visually appealing number. A number containing a few nice bulbous zeros, even some deliciously plump eights, sixes or nines. A curvaceous three, as ample as a wet nurse's bosom, would be enough to make me happy. A number like 14,717, is all bones. It exposes its skinniness directly, assails your retina with its sharp angles. Whatever you do, once written down, it always remains a series of fractured straight lines. It would only take one tile more or less to give that unappealing number the beginnings of an attractive curve.
Another excerpt of her diary that I find it hilariously enjoyable to get you started :
Saturday is always the busiest day of the week, along with Wednesday, but when Saturday is also the last day of the sales, then you can tell a mile off that it's going to be a horrendous day, the kind of day when even the shopping centre's 100,000 square metres seem to be hard put to hold so many people. It was packed from the minute the doors opened. Hordes of visitors poured into my care all day long to deposit their stream of urine, excrement, blood and even vomit. Sometimes I see them reduced purely to sphincters, stomachs, intestines and bladders on legs and no longer as entire human beings. I don't particularly like these peak shopping days which turn the shopping centre into a giant ant hill. I find all this frantic activity disturbing, even though it often heralds excellent takings. You have to be on your toes the whole time so as to keep up. Restock the cubicles with toilet paper; don't forget to wipe the seats as soon as you get the chance; chuck bleach blocks into the urinals regularly, not forgetting to sit by the saucer as often as possible. Thank you, goodbye. Thank you, have a nice day. Hello, thank you, goodbye. The thing is that a lot of them don't give anything if there's no witness to appreciate their generosity. Auntologist number 4:Beggar absent, begging bowl empty. I think the entire human race has come by here today. That's what I said to myself as I locked the gates, exhausted, my back broken, my nostrils saturated with the smell of bleach and ammonia.
There are some more on the line that made me laugh but I'm not going to put them down here.